What are Antioxidants in Skincare?
Antioxidants are abundant in nature – they’re produced by our bodies and found in plants. Antioxidants protect our skin from oxidative stress, which occurs when free radicals effectively steal electrons from other molecules, damaging them in the process.
Whilst free radicals are inevitable due to ageing and environmental factors, it’s beneficial to manage their effects through antioxidants. Luckily, antioxidants can be readily introduced into our everyday routines through antioxidant-rich foods and antioxidant ingredients in skincare. Some great sources include:
- Anthocyanins: Found in eggplants, grapes and berries
- Beta-carotene: Found in pumpkins, mangoes, carrots and spinach
- Flavonoids: Found in green tea, citrus fruits and red wine
- Lutein: Found in green, leafy vegetables
- Vitamins: Found in fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds
- Skincare: Found in products with suitable antioxidants for your skin needs
Are Antioxidants Good for Skin?
There’s no doubt that antioxidants benefit the skin enormously. Antioxidants work to:
- Minimise signs of ageing
Antioxidants help to improve fine lines and wrinkles by managing oxidative stress.
- Protect from UV damage
Antioxidants minimise the skin's inflammatory response to the sun, which helps to protect against exposure.
- Promote skin repair
Antioxidants help encourage cell and tissue growth, resulting in a renewed, radiant looking complexion.
- Brighten skin tone
Antioxidants help inhibit tyrosinase, the enzyme that stimulates melanin production.
Antioxidants Ingredients in Skincare
In addition to eating antioxidant-rich foods, incorporating antioxidant skincare into your routine is beneficial for a natural looking glow. There isn’t just one form of this superhero ingredient – instead, antioxidant ingredients in skincare are wide-ranging and come with their own specific benefits. For the best antioxidant options for acne or dullness in skin, understand which of your favourite skincare ingredients also helps to reduce free radical and oxidative stress.
Below are common antioxidant ingredients in skincare that can help address your skin concerns.
Retinol (Vitamin A)
Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A, known for its anti-ageing and acne-related benefits. Retinol penetrates deep into the skin to help neutralise free radicals, promote the production of collagen, and encourage cell renewal. Retinol is multi-beneficial – addressing signs of skin discolouration, breakouts and lack of firmness.
To help with fine lines and wrinkles, consider our Revitalift or Retinol ranges. Pro-retinol, pro-Xylane and retinol make up many of the products in these ranges, including L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Classic Fragrance Day Cream - which promotes firmer and younger looking skin in just two weeks. The Laser X3 Pure Retinol Night Serum contains 0.2% Pure Retinol that helps to renew the skin overnight, visibly reducing wrinkles and promoting smooth, even skin tone. This should be introduced gradually into a night-time routine and when using Retinol always wear SPF during the day.
Vitamin C is one of the more well-known form of antioxidant ingredients in skincare – working to help boost collagen production and fade dark spots. We suggest applying your vitamin C products in the mornings, as it helps to protect skin from daily environmental aggressors. Vitamin C is beneficial for tired dull skin, with our Vitamin C range for men helping to address signs of fatigue and congestion. As men have thicker and oilier skin than women, it helps to use products that are specifically developed for your skin.
Start with the Hydra Energetic Wake Up Boost Wash, a refreshing cleanser with guarana to combat tired-looking skin. Follow with a moisturiser especially if you shave every morning.
Niacinamide, also known as vitamin B3, is an antioxidant that improves skin tone and texture, whilst minimising signs of ageing. Niacinamide is considered the best antioxidant for acne, due to its soothing properties and suitability for sensitive skin. Niacinamide is often used in products containing retinol, as niacinamide can help to reduce retinol’s side effects.
Polyphenols are compounds that contain antioxidant benefits for skin. This means they can help prevent photodamage, support the skin barrier and improve skin defense against oxidative stress.
To incorporate polyphenols into your anti-ageing skincare routine, consider our Age Perfect Golden Age range. The Golden Age Re-Densifying SPF15 Day Cream enriches skin with peony polyphenols and calcium B5, to help combat signs of sagging skin and increase radiance. At night, reach for the Age Perfect Cell Renewal Midnight Serum within our Cell Renewal range, which utilises our unique Antioxidant Recovery Complex to promote softer, younger-looking skin.
Resveratrol is a polyphenol known for its anti-ageing powers. Found in the skin of grapes and berries, resveratrol helps to protect our skin in the same way it protects the outside of fruits.
Resveratrol also has antibacterial properties, which aids in the management of visible redness and skin prone to irritation. Keep in mind that resveratrol breaks down under UV light, so it’s best to apply it in the evenings.
Vitamin E is an essential antioxidant for many of the body’s organs, including the skin. Known for its ability to promote skin repair, vitamin E can be found in lotions, moisturisers and creams for dry skin, but also works wonders to hydrate all skin types.
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